Coaching Q&A with Rhona

  • How does Rhona's coaching stand out from others in the field?

    (1) I'm accredited by the International Coach Federation (ICF), which means I had to fulfill a significant number of coaching hours and go through a rigorous certification and examination process. Plus, in order to maintain my ICF credential, I'm required to earn continuing education credits, which means I'm required to continue learning and training in my field.

    (2) Most trained coaches learn how to coach individuals. I've completed the course-work in individual coaching at The Coaches Training Institute and the course-work in Relationship Systems Intelligence (or relationship coaching) at the Center for Right Relationship. What that means is that my individual coaching is enhanced by a toolset designed to improve personal and professional relationships and teamwork AND I'm qualified in an advanced coaching method designed for coaching couples, families, colleagues and teams.
    (3) I have a past life as an award-winning instructor and a corporate executive who led a team of 20+ direct and indirect reports. What that means is that I'm skilled in helping mentor people and also familiar with the pressures and paradigms of various kinds of educational and work environments.
    (4) I'm a parent and I'm married, which means I'm familiar with the unique and often daunting demands of balancing children, a relationship and work. 
    (5) While based in Northern California, I work with clients all over North America via phone, Skype or FaceTime.

  • What important information should potential client have thought through before seeking out a Life Coach? While it's often a great idea to seek out a life coach because you're having problems achieving your goals, or even determining what those goals are, be aware that even the best life coach won't be able to make you fulfill requests or answer his or her questions if you're not willing to take the time to be accountable to the coaching process. Coaching works best if you're willing to work it. It's okay to lose confidence in the process, it's okay to renege on some of your commitments to your coach (which means reneging on some of your commitments to yourself), it's also okay to change your mind about coaching. If any of these things happen, talk to your life coach about them. The best coaches will help you figure out whether what you're going through is a lack of commitment to or interest in coaching itself, or an obstacle that coaching can help you overcome. All of that said, if you're starting out with the expectation that your coach will "make" you show up for your coaching sessions, or that it's his or her job to get you to engage in the exercises you're asked to explore, then it might be worth waiting a little longer before you start coaching.

  • What questions should a consumer ask to hire the right service professional?
  • What training have you received as a Life Coach? 
    Are you accredited by the International Coach Federation?
    Do you offer a complimentary sample session and, if so, how long is that session?
    Do you yourself work with a mentor coach?
    What's your policy on client confidentiality?
    How much do you charge for coaching?
    Do you offer discounts or coaching packages?
    What are your coaching specialties?
    Who's your ideal client?
    What are your greatest strengths as a coach?
    What are your areas of improvement as a coach?
    Where can I find testimonials about your coaching?
    If I'm not satisfied with your services as a coach, what's your cancellation or refund policy?

    If Rhona were a coaching client, what would she wish she knew about her trade? Unfortunately, because it's still unregulated, pretty much anyone can call him or herself a Life Coach. Yet training--and a good amount of it--makes a major difference in the caliber of coaching and the sustainability of the results you'll get with a coach. Do your homework to ensure that the person you choose to work with is someone experienced in this field, which means s/he is well-trained, accredited and has worked with diverse clients. Also, coaching is NOT the same as advice-giving. The best coaches are those who empower clients to find the answers and resources within themselves, and who offer tools and techniques so clients can do that long after they've stopped working with a coach. If you get the feeling that you're working with someone--or about to work with a coach--who has all the answers, run in the opposite direction. The answers are all within you; your coach's job is to help you find them!

  • What advice would Rhona have for a customer looking to hire a Life Coach? I always suggest that clients do a few things when looking for a life coach: (1) Check the coach's credentials to ensure they're accredited by the International Coach Federation; (2) Most coaches offer complimentary sample sessions, so try to "meet" with at least a couple before making a selection; & (3) Finding someone with whom you feel comfortable is crucial to the success of the coaching process. Don't talk yourself, or let a coach talk you, into working with someone if your gut says that person isn't right for you. If your gut's not convinced, keep looking.